Set against the crumbling of the Soviet Union, as observed backstage at the Kuzlov Theater in St. Petersburg, the play is the comedic metaphor for the too-rapid transformation of Russia from communism to free-market capitalism. Nina, the daughter of the wardrobe mistress, has been cast as Irina in a revival of Chekhov's The Three Sisters. Using her considerable talents-theatrical and otherwise-she persuades management that what Chekhov's play needs in the New Russia is "music&some songs&maybe even some dances." Chekhov's masterpiece becomes, for marketing purposes, an American style musical titled O My Sister! The venerable artistic director is kicked upstairs-after all, "Russia doesn't need great men now; it needs clever men"-and the long-reigning prima donna ends up working in wardrobe. A funny-sad commentary on current events, the metaphor of the quick-change room is not lost on the audience as the world around the acting troupe changes as drastically and as quickly as the world outside.